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Contact: Tracy Swartout, 360-569-6510
ASHFORD, Wash. – The National Park Service (NPS) has completed its environmental review and issued its decision to permit the installation of limited-range cellular equipment in the attic of Mount Rainier’s Jackson Memorial Visitor Center.
The decision, detailed in the Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the Paradise Cellular Environmental Assessment (EA), authorizes the issuance of right-of-way permits to two wireless carriers, Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile. The permits will allow co-location of limited range wireless communications facilities in the attic of the Jackson Memorial Visitor Center (JVC), located in Paradise, Mount Rainier National Park. As part of this decision, AT&T may be added pending final review and approval of their proposal, which was submitted in January 2016 prior to completion of the EA.
A cell tower will not be constructed, preserving the extraordinary scenery at Paradise. The wireless facilities will be hidden within the attic of the JVC and will provide year-round cellular service, including voice and data capabilities, to the Paradise developed area. Completed in 2008, the JVC was designed to be architecturally compatible with the Paradise Historic District.
Paradise is located on the south slope of Mount Rainier. It is the most popular and heavily used area of the park, with approximately one million visitors in 2017 and up to 9,000 visitors on the busiest days. Paradise is the gateway to designated wilderness and the most popular climbing route to the summit.
The FONSI, its appendices, and the EA are available on the NPS Planning, Environment, and Public Comment (PEPC) website at https://parkplanning.nps.gov/ParadiseCellular by selecting Document List from the left navigation bar.
The National Park Service appreciates the public taking time to share their comments, ideas and concerns, and contributing to the Mount Rainier National Park planning process. If you have questions about this decision contact Tracy Swartout, Deputy Superintendent at 360-569-6510.